Morocco Women displayed a troublesome second half to painfully win against Uganda’s Crested Cranes 1-3 in the WAFCON 2022 group stage at the Stade Prince Moulay Abdalleh on Tuesday.
After an equally dealt first 12 minutes, Tottenham’s Rosella Ayane was off the mark to send Morocco into the lead through a penalty, having been taken down by Margaret Namirimu in the box. A ruling that came out of a long VAR check.
Tooro Queen’s Sumaya Komuntale drew Uganda right back into the sprint with a neatly trimmed free kick into the top corner after a series of mishandled attempts.
Fazila Ikwaput got close in a shot that went wide at the 23rd minute when Uganda was tightly in contest for possession.
Morocco misplaced countless passes in the center to Shamirah Nalugya who was so composed in Uganda’s midfield as they failed to beat her on one-on-ones.
Fauzia Najjemba fired wide a through-pass from Nalugya minutes into the end of halftime limiting Uganda’s chances of getting lucky behind Morocco’s defense line.
Morocco’s Ayena utilized the left flank to destabilize Uganda’s back line but yielded no fruits as Salma Amani failed on converting the final passes in the final third.
The Atlas Lionesses of Morocco rode back into the driver’s seat at 67 minutes thanks to a well cushioned set piece by Ghizlane Chebbak that was headed into goal by Saint Etienne’s defender Nesryne Elchad.
Uganda’s coach George Lutalo was then provoked to introduce Viola Nambi for Ritah Kivumbi formulating the necessary pressure on Morocco and later Joanita Ainembabazi for Fazila Ikwaput.
Uganda’s hero Sumaya Komuntale, turned villain in the second half after she was given matching orders following a second booking from an elbow on Morocco’s Ayena, ending in a penalty goal, scored by Ghizlane Chebbak.
Sumaya’s first booking came off a dangerous tackle on Samya Hassani in the first half after 39 minutes.
Aturo Ruth Uganda’s goalie and Captain did so well to get the ball away but was betrayed by VAR, positioning her to save two penalty kicks.
Morocco will play Senegal on Friday the 8th 11pm (EAT) to defend their table lead but already have qualified for the quarter-finals. Senegal beat Burkina Faso 1-0 on Monday to settle second on the log and qualify for the next round.
Uganda play Burkina Faso on Friday 8th at 11pm (EAT).